Stormwater management is when stormwater runoff is managed for the purpose of quantity and quality control. Any precipitation that falls from the sky such as rain, hail, or melting snow that runs off hard surfaces is considered to be stormwater. When it is absorbed into the soil and filtered, this stormwater will then continue on until it ultimately replenishes aquifers or reaches a natural body of water such as streams and rivers.
Whenever soil is over saturated due to heavy rainfall or floods, the runoff remains on the surface and flows across the soil. This causes erosion that carries untreated pollutants such as nutrients, pesticides, and sediments depositing them into creeks, rivers, wetlands, and larger water bodies such as the ocean.
When stormwater is blocked from naturally soaking into the ground in developed urban areas by impermeable surfaces such as sidewalks, roofs, streets, and driveways, it also leads to pollutant runoff. However, stormwater management techniques such as green vegetated infrastructure and design is utilised to capture stormwater then reuse to maintain or restore natural absorption.
There’s always a change in the natural patterns of runoff as more land is developed. Construction of buildings, roadways, subdivisions, etc alters the velocity and volume of natural runoff, meaning there a consistently significant necessity to properly convey stormwater to where it needs to be.
When natural runoff infiltration is interrupted, it results in increased runoff rates as well as localized flooding. Impervious surface areas also often adds polluted water to creeks, streams, rivers, and other large bodies of water. This increased runoff and decreased infiltration creates the necessity for robust stormwater management designs which provide significant benefit to public health and safety as well as environmental sustainability.
Why Is Stormwater Management So Important?
The primary purpose of stormwater management is to reduce this runoff and detain as much as possible, while removing pollutants to improve the quality of water, which are both essential to support the function and resiliency of both community health and the ecosystem.
Stormwater runoff can include organic matter and bacteria from animal waste and trash, toxic chemicals like pesticides, oil and grease from roads, and so much more. These pollutants are ultimately carried by drainage structures and stormwater drains into our creeks, and rivers into much larger bodies of water, and can be extremely harmful to our environment.
Ocean Protect’s stormwater management strategies encompass effective approaches and technologies that reduce runoff volumes and capture harmful pollutants. Both vegetated and proprietary below ground solutions are tested, proven and at the forefront of stormwater management techniques.
As we protect our water resources and our ecosystems by instigating effective and robust stormwater management techniques, we ultimately take care of our environment and invest in our future. Contact Ocean Protect today to find out more.